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Bone Marrow Transplant. 1993 Jan;11(1):21-6.

Transjugular liver biopsy in BMT.

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  • 1Postgraduate School of Hematology Farreras Valenti, Hospital Clínic, Barcelona, Spain.


With the aim of evaluating liver disturbances after BMT in 76 patients, the hepatic venous pressure gradient was measured and a transvenous liver biopsy was performed through the jugular vein. Catheterization was successful in 71 patients (93%). In 11 cases the procedure was performed twice, yielding a total number of 82 studies. In five (6%) liver biopsies were non-evaluable. Complications were rare (7%), minor and reversible. As a result of this procedure, the diagnosis was modified in 45%, with both the diagnosis and treatment being modified in 30% of patients. Veno-occlusive disease (VOD) was histologically demonstrated in 15 out of 26 patients (58%) in whom this complication was suspected and in two out of 33 (6%) in whom it was not. Acute GVHD of the liver was confirmed in 15 out of the 35 patients (43%) in whom this complication was suspected and in four of 24 (17%) in whom it was not. The hepatic venous pressure gradient was significantly higher in VOD than in liver GVHD. Whereas 14/17 (82%) patients with VOD had a gradient pressure higher than 9 mmHg, no patient with GVHD had a gradient above this value. We conclude that transjugular liver biopsy is an effective, safe, and useful technique to evaluate BMT related liver dysfunction.

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